24 September 2014…Whiplash

This week, we’d like to share a recent personal experience to discuss whiplash injuries.  Some of you may have had similar experiences in the past.

A few weeks ago, Ceci was riding on a bus that was involved in a motor vehicle accident where the bus rear-ended a car.  The force of the bus slamming its brakes, coupled with hitting the car in front of it, was enough to nearly throw Ceci out of her seat.  At the moment of impact, her head and upper body weren’t completely upright (she was looking to the side), and she ended up with a whiplash injury in her neck.  Thankfully, with no seatbelt restraints, the injury wasn’t worse.

The day after the accident, she was feeling quite sore.  I (Thomas) examined her and then treated her neck and upper back.  Along with the usual muscle spasms found in whiplash injuries, we found several joint restrictions in her spine (even more than we expected), but she felt immediate and substantial relief after the treatment.  With a few chiropractic treatments and an extra massage therapy appointment, she was feeling better within a week or two.

In a rear-end whiplash injury where the person is looking straight ahead, a person’s neck is exposed to hyperflexion and hyperextension, meaning that the neck bends forwards and backwards further than normal.  This happens very quickly, and sometimes even violently, depending on the speed of the impact.  This causes a strain/sprain on the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the neck (what are called the “soft tissues”), as well as having an impact on the joints and vertebrae.  In Ceci’s case as with other people, she wasn’t facing completely forward at the moment of impact, so the injury also included a sideways motion in the neck.  This causes an additional injury to the muscles and nerves on the sides of the neck.

At Chiropractie Noordzee, when we treat patients with whiplash injuries, we focus not only on correcting the joint restrictions, but also the soft tissues, as well.  By looking at the various aspects together, we can better treat the injury and help it to heal as quickly as possible.  This comprehensive approach not only helps to heal the acute problem, but also helps to protect the patient’s neck against continuing, chronic problems in the future.

For more information on treating whiplash injuries through chiropractic care, please contact us at Chiropractie Noordzee.